Employees in California know that the workweek is tough. A day of rest is a welcome respite from the grind of the job. It is so important, in fact, that California law requires employers to provide one day of rest to employees for every seven days of the workweek. However, until recently, the law was unclear on how to define the workweek and what exceptions were allowed.
In early May, the California Supreme Court clarified existing rules related to the state-mandated day of rest. The new ruling is especially important to full-time employees who work six or more days in a work week, or part-time employees who work 30 hours or less per week. Let’s take a look at what the Supreme Court said and what it means for employees in California.
- The employer defines a seven-day workweek
Most people might define the workweek as it appears on the calendar, Sunday to Saturday. However, the Supreme Court will allow each company to set its own workweek, based on a seven-day rolling schedule. This ruling still allows employees a designated day of rest while allowing employers to meet their specific business needs.
2. Part-time employees may be exempted from the day of rest
In certain circumstances, a part-time employee may be exempted from the mandatory day of rest. If an employee works less than 30 hours per week and less than six hours per shift, he or she may be scheduled work a seventh day in a workweek. For example, an employee could be expected to work seven four-hour shifts in a workweek, for a total of 28 hours.
3. Employees can still choose to work more than six days
Employees should be informed of the mandatory day of rest requirement when hired, according to National Law Review. However, employees can choose to work more than six days per week. This exemption allows employees to take overtime or help meet other business needs.
Now, employees can have a day off or choose to work more than six days per week. Flexibility in the law allows employers to balance business needs with the personal lives of its employees. By understanding the law, employees have the power to ensure they are treated fairly in the workplace.